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Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Vine Urges Patience and Giving Sousa Time...Blackstock Available (But Loan Window Closes Tomorrow)...QPR Reserves Lose

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- QPR Reserves Lose to Brighton

Sky/Chris Galea - Vine calls for patience QPR striker backs boss Sousa
- Queens Park Rangers striker Rowan Vine believes manager Paulo Sousa should be given time to transform the Hoops into a side capable of competing in the Premier League.
- The Hoops still have a chance of getting into the play-offs this season, as they currently sit seven points away from the top six and Vine believes that their recent victories over fellow play-off chasing Swansea and Bristol City have proved that Sousa is the right man for the job.
- "I think it is hugely important that Paolo is given time over the summer to form the foundations for a promotion push, as he was handed a tough task when he took over earlier this season," Vine told skysports.com.
- "He took over just before the Christmas period, which is always a tricky time of year, and he had to hit the ground running really.
- "He was trying to put his ideas across to the players, but it is difficult to do that quickly when there is a game every Saturday and Tuesday.
- "The summer will allow him to really put his ideas in motion and we have already seen the benefits that he has given the players with the recent results.
- "I really hope that Paolo is given the time that is needed for us to have a real good crack at getting into the Premier League next season."
- No stability
- The Hoops have had three different men at the helm this season, as Iain Dowie was replaced by Souza, with Gareth Ainsworth acting as caretaker in between, and Vine insists these changes may have cost them a play-off place this season.
- "There have been a lot of changes this season and we have had three different managers, including a caretaker, as well, and there are still new signings coming in nearly every week, so I don't think that sort of instability has helped our cause this season.
- "Success doesn't come over night and I think anything better than our 14th place finish last season should be seen as progress.
- "I think the manner in which we finish the season will judge whether we have done well this season, as a strong finish would give us a top ten place in the table and something to build on next season." SkySports

Dave McIntyre/Ealing Gazette - More doubts over Dexter's future
- QPR have rejected an approach from Nottingham Forest for Dexter Blackstock – but his days at Loftus Road look numbered.
- Rangers will listen to offers for Blackstock, who is now effectively up for sale after being overlooked by coach Paulo Sousa.
- Rowan Vine’s return from a broken leg will push the former Southampton forward further down the pecking order. And with Sousa keen to sign at least one striker this summer, Blackstock’s future appears to lie elsewhere.
- Sousa’s own position will be assessed at the end of the season, but Blackstock is not a favourite of Rangers boss Flavio Briatore either - despite scoring 12 goals in a season in which he has not been a first-team regular.
- Terms for a new long-term contract for Blackstock were agreed in January, but the deal was called off without him putting pen to paper and his future has since been in doubt.
- Forest have expressed an interest in taking Blackstock on an initial loan deal with a view to a permanent transfer at the end of the season, but Rangers are not keen.
- Goalkeeper Lee Camp joined Forest in a similar arrangement ahead of the January transfer window, but a permanent move never materialised and he ended up back at Rangers when his loan expired.
- At least one other Championship club is believed to be considering making an offer for Blackstock, who has been a key player for QPR since his move from Southampton in 2006.
- He scored 14 goals in his first season at Rangers, several of them coming in the crucial end-of-season run-in to help the club avoid relegation. Last season he endured a bad spell but finished the campaign strongly, netting four goals in seven matches.
- Blackstock is Rangers’ top scorer again this season, but has been in and out of the side and has not been helped by his last three managers preferring to play with a lone striker. Sousa believes January signing Heidar Helguson is more suited to that role.
- And Sousa has recently indicated that he would like to sign a target man to give Rangers a stronger physical presence in attack and to link up with the likes of Vine, Akos Buzsaky and Wayne Routledge next season. Ealing Gazette

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